Science As Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain, 1760-1820 by Jan GolinskiScience As Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain, 1760-1820 by Jan Golinski

Science As Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain, 1760-1820

byJan Golinski

Paperback | May 1, 1999

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Science as Public Culture joins a growing number of recent studies examining science as a practical activity in specific social settings. Professor Golinski considers the development of chemistry in Britain in the period from 1760 to 1820, and relates it to the rise and subsequent eclipse of forms of civic life characteristic of the European Enlightenment. Within this framework the careers of prominent chemists such as William Cullen, Joseph Black, Joseph Priestly, Thomas Beddoes, and Humphry Davy are interpreted in a new light. The major discoveries of the time, including nitrous oxide (laughing gas) and the electrical decomposition of water, are set against the background of alternative ways of constructing science as a public enterprise. The book makes a significant contribution to our understanding of the relations between scientific activity and processes of social and political change in a period of great transformations in chemistry and in the conditions of public life.
Title:Science As Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain, 1760-1820Format:PaperbackDimensions:358 pages, 8.98 × 5.98 × 0.79 inPublished:May 1, 1999Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521659523

ISBN - 13:9780521659529

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments; List of illustrations; 1. Introduction: science as public culture; 2. 'The study of a gentlemen': chemistry as a public science in the Scottish Enlightenment; 3. Joseph Priestley and the English Enlightement; 4. Airs and their uses; 5. The coming of the chemical revolution; 6. 'Dr Beddoes's Breath': nitrous oxide and the culmination of Enlightenment medical chemistry; 7. Humphry Davy: the public face of genius; 8. Analysis, education and the chemical community; Bibliography; Index.

From Our Editors

The tide of science washed over the ideals and pursuits of the Enlightenment in Europe between 1760 and 1820. With particular attention paid to the development of chemistry in Britain, Jan Golinski studies the ascendancy of works by the likes of William Cullen, Joseph Black, Joseph Priestly, Thomas Beddoes and Humphry Davy. In Science as Public Culture, Golinski takes these practitioners' major works and relates them to British society's evolving view to science as public enterprise, as well as its effect on social and political thinking. The web of Golinski's thinking is impressive in its complexity and breadth.

Editorial Reviews

"...an important contribution to our understanding of how science functions as a part of society." Hugh L. Guilderson, Journal of Social History